Daniil Kvyat: “I think it was a fair move on Vettel”


SHANGHAI, CHINA - APRIL 17: Daniil Kvyat of Russia and Red Bull Racing celebrates on the podium after finishing third in the Formula One Grand Prix of China at Shanghai International Circuit on April 17, 2016 in Shanghai, China. (Photo by Dan Istitene/Getty Images)

Daniil Kvyat was one of a handful of drivers to have a trouble free race in the 2016 Chinese Grand Prix on Sunday, and after starting the race from sixth position on the grid in his Red Bull, the Russian is happy to finish on the podium.

“I really enjoyed the race today.” said Kvyat. “Our pace was very strong and to get this result at this track where we didn’t expect to be so strong is really great.

“The car is performing really well, the chassis is easy to drive and with further upgrades coming to the power unit, we should be in an even stronger position.”

The race wasn’t without controversy for the Russian driver after a dramatic move for position on Sebastien Vettel, “I think it was a fair move on Vettel. I saw the gap and I went for it. We didn’t touch, unfortunately for him, Kimi was on his other side. For me it was a logical move and it paid off with a podium.

“It’s a nice boost for our side of the garage after a couple of tricky races. It’s also good for the team to be consistently fighting for podiums this year. It’s very encouraging for the season. I’m a very happy man today and it’s nice to carry this feeling heading into my home Grand Prix in Russia.”

Team-mate Daniel Ricciardo had a much tougher challenge in comparison. After starting the race from second on the grid, a puncture sustained on lap three pretty much put paid to any chances of the Australian finishing on the podium.

Despite his troubles, the Red Bull driver is happy with the package the team brought to the Shanghai International Circuit, “I think there were some incidents on the first lap and I remember on my second lap there was a little bit of debris here and there.” said Ricciardo.”But it didn’t seem like there was one big bit which I caught so it was still unexpected when I was coming through Turn 11 and 12 and was feeling the rear start to slide so I just came on the radio straight away to let them know the tyres were gone.

“The puncture became noticeable when I got on the straight as I could feel the car start to wobble and then my tyre went. Then the safety car put us even further back so that was like a double whammy, which felt like getting punched in the stomach by a heavy weight.

“But in the end the second part of the race I drove probably one of the best races of my life. The package is really promising for sure. Right now, three races in every weekend we’ve shown our strength at some point and it’s been a strength we didn’t think we’d have this early in the season, so it definitely feels more like 2014 when we had potential.

“I felt like I would have sprayed champagne today and part of me is smiling because I am optimistic that will happen this year so that’s a really good feeling and I’ll keep fighting.”